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Greek chaos provides opening for neo-Nazi party......

My Greek-American son and his wife live on a quiet Greek island in the Aegean, which much to their surprise, had voted around 10% for the neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn in the last election. Golden Dawn came to their island last week to rally supporters, to be met with a protest group of around 400 "antifascists", yelling no to fascism. Golden Dawn has the support of many in the police force, unfortunately. Around 40 riot special forces police went sent from Athens to protect Golden Dawn members, in what was a peaceful protest. However, police used tear gas against the protesters and one policeman used a club on a young Greek girl.

Society in Greece is stretched to the limit by all the austerity measures put in place, with new taxes and many price increases, medicines in short supply, some unable to pay for electric power or for oil to heat their homes, many in private and public employment not being paid for months.

For Greece thus far, there is little if any hope in sight for better living, and the political structure there is changing in ways that are very frightening. For a country that lived under the military junta for years, with a military coup having taken over one morning when Athenians awakened to the tanks filling the streets it is even more troubling that the Golden Dawn neo-Nazi party is gaining more support and power.

Warning: The video below is "Racist and violent ---- the true face of Golden Dawn”

Greek far-right Golden Dawn member: 'We will turn immigrants into soap'

The neo-Nazi's slogan is "Greece: Only for the Greeks." The party's symbol is similiar to the Germany's Nazi swastika, and their salute also like the Nazis.

Golden Dawn rising.....

Greece’s neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party is gaining popularity in the midst of the country’s deepening financial crisis.The group has been implicated in torture cases, and for inciting an wave of racial violence sweeping the country. An opinion poll published by KAPA Research in October showed that support for the extremist political group had grown from 7.5 percent of the population in June to 10.4 percent currently. The Golden Dawn emerged from political obscurity into the mainstream in May after winning 7 percent of the vote in the Greek parliamentary elections. Since then, the country has reportedly witnessed an upsurge in racial violence connected to the right-wing group.
Latest opinion polls show the popularity of the party - the first ultra-nationalist group to enter parliament since a military junta was overthrown in 1974 - has risen since the last election in June, when Golden Dawn won 18 seats in the 300-seat parliament with 7 per cent of the vote. A survey by VPRC, an independent polling company, put support for Golden Dawn at 14 per cent in October, making it third most popular party.

Now Golden Dawn is suddenly everywhere. Its eight local offices at election time have become 60 nationwide. It is polling consistently as the third most popular party at 12%. Its parliamentarians have threatened to "drag migrant children from the kindergartens," and requested a list of the kindergartens with high migrant numbers. This, the Greek education ministry has willingly provided. And the police are reportedly in on it, which means victims have virtually nowhere to turn. Panagiotaros told Mason that he estimates 50-60 percent of the Greek police force supports Golden Dawn, and "every day it is growing," – which means they don't get involved when Golden Dawn is doing damage. Some Greeks claim terrible mistreatment at the hands of police who openly boast their allegiance to Golden Dawn as well.

Golden Dawn, gaining legitmacy in a deeply frustrated nation. Greek chaos provides opening for far-right party. Journalists were told to stand up in a sign of respect while the party leader made a grand entrance. Nikolaos Michaloliakos, gave a rambling speech which included the proclamation that the official account of the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz was widely exaggerated.
The Rise of 'Golden Dawn' in Greece - Mini-documentary by 'The Guardian'

Are Greek Police 'Colluding' With Far Right Golden Dawn

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Comment Preferences

  •  Torture allegations (11+ / 0-)
    There have also been a number of reports of neo-Nazi sympathizers infiltrating the Greek police force.The Greek government said it is currently investigating accusations that police brutally tortured 15 members of an anti-fascist organization in September. Public order minister Nikos Dendias said that the probe would take the form of a closed inquiry. He pledged to stamp out racial violence in Greece, and appointed a new police unit to deal with racial incidents.

    But support for the far-right continues to grow in Greece amid mounting economic turmoil and unemployment topping 50 percent amongst the nation’s youth. The Golden Dawn has capitalized on public resentment for the government’s austerity measures, and with the country’s worsening economic situation, the political balance could further shift in their favor.

    "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

    by allenjo on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:20:43 PM PST

  •  Are there no glue factories, no soylent green (4+ / 0-)

    canneries?

    Whatever will we do if we over-produce soap?

    One of the major differences between Democrats and Republicans is that the former have the moral imagination to see the moral dimension of financial affairs, while the latter do not. Pragmatists are the exception.

    by Words In Action on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:48:34 PM PST

  •  Panayotaros forgets that the military dictatorship (5+ / 0-)

    operated torture prison for its politcal enemies, however.

    Golden Dawn is tapping into very real anger and fear to achieve its political advent.

    "We believe we should be armed," said the group's deputy leader Elias Panayotaros. "It's impossible for people to sleep in their houses and not be attacked by burglars. The attacks are from illegal immigrants 95 percent of the time. "We have hundreds of thousands of immigrants from Iran, Afghanistan and all the places the U.S.A. is fighting wars. They (the U.S.) should take the refugees!"

    CBS News spoke to Panayotaros in his Athens store, where he sells memorabilia and paraphernalia from his own party and just about every other possible right-wing group in Europe. There are photos of the Greece's military dictatorship period.

    "Greece had no debt then, and nobody was committing suicide," he remarks.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/...

    "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

    by allenjo on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:02:51 PM PST

  •  He is not a greek, himself. (6+ / 0-)

    That one with the purple shirt and the shades; he is not Greek, I don't care where he was born and raised and how well he speaks the language. I recognize Greeks because I am from Turkey, myself. His mannerisms don't match.

    This title, "Golden Dawn," is peculiar. Hand picked, I assume, giving the Greeks a "Northern European white" image while in reality the average Greek looks typically "Mediterranean."

    This, following the financial turmoil created fear and insecurity, is not an accident. Fear is an emotion blocking human reason and logic. Especially when people are collectively feeling insecure and fearful, it is natural for them to start looking for scapegoats. That's why the police are acting fascistic themselves while claiming to be anti-fascists. It is called the failing of reason. They don't see the irony.

    This event tells me that the hands behind the destruction of Greek economy are the same hands behind this "Golden Dawn."

    The steps run parallel to the events in Europe before WWII.

    Someones did not want Greece to become an increasingly mixed society open to cultures and other people around the world (which is the natural course of human history in globalizing world) and thus helped to create the financial collapse in Greece.

    And now they are offering the fearful public a solution: "Golden Dawn" of superior race of "real" Greeks who are supposedly suffering because of the "sub human" immigrants (who mostly look like the mediterranean Greeks, given a shade or tow light or dark).

    The purple shirted asshole is saying "keep your garlic," attempting to insult the immigrants and also subliminally messaging the vulnerable ones who would start differentiate their diets.

    Hey stupid jackass who is pretending to be the "real" Greek! You don't have a bone in your body that is Greek. What are you going to do, next? Turn the lighter skinned and more northern looking Greeks against the southern and more olive skinned Greeks? Besides, idiot, Greeks love the garlic too.

    What a travesty going on in the world...

    Who are these plotters and planners?

    Golden Dawn?

    Looks like a "Golden" pile of shit to me...

    "Corruptio Optimi Pessima" (Corruption of the best is the worst)

    by zenox on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:03:46 PM PST

    •  I meant, "Greek," himself. Upper case G. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      allenjo

      I am typing fast. My apologies.

      "Corruptio Optimi Pessima" (Corruption of the best is the worst)

      by zenox on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:06:46 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  These are Russians or Stassi (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      zenox, allenjo, Ahianne, joanneleon

      and their children. I lean towards the German because it is almost perfect but still off.

      "Til you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules" John Lennon - Working Class Hero

      by Horace Boothroyd III on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:58:40 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Something is off. Definitely not Greek. (5+ / 0-)

        Dear people of Greece,

        If you read this comment, hear my words: This Turk really loves you; has always admired you and your distinguished history. Has fond memories of sharing culture, music, food, lands, climate, movies with you. We cry for the same and laugh at the same thing. Our fishermen exchange tobacco and stories in those blue waters surrounding both our homes. Our villagers both play backgammon and eat baklava.You are a lovely people and I wish and pray that you'll be safe from harm for many many centuries to come.

        Here is my warning: I think you have been infiltrated by trolls who are manipulating you by using your vulnerable economic state which most likely has been manufactured by them, also. They are not your friends.

        You are a lovely, intelligent, strong people.

        Stay awake and be vigilant.

        "Corruptio Optimi Pessima" (Corruption of the best is the worst)

        by zenox on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 02:22:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I cry for my ancesters... This is the face of..... (7+ / 0-)

    austerity and what it does to what were once rational and and good people.

    I hope they see their way back to sanity and fiscal equality stability for all.

    "The sun is shining........"

    by LamontCranston on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:05:19 PM PST

    •  Where is your family from in Greece, Lamont? (4+ / 0-)

      I have family of friends in Athens, where the suffering is the worst.

      On my son's island they have been spared much of what is going on in Athens.

      They were part of the protest, and while the protestors were non-violent, the riot police in full gear sadly were not.

      "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

      by allenjo on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:24:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Horrible. nt (4+ / 0-)

    "Til you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules" John Lennon - Working Class Hero

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:14:47 PM PST

  •  Oh dear (5+ / 0-)

    I think we've seen this movie before.

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:41:10 PM PST

  •  Hungary is going the same way it seems...n/t (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    allenjo, joanneleon
    •  what about spain and portugal, massconfusion? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joanneleon

      Well Spain has been down that road before, surely they do not want to go back.

      "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

      by allenjo on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 02:08:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Oh, hardly. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ichibon, joanneleon

      I was there in September.  A more welcoming and less xenophobic environment I have never seen.  Even New Yorkers and Washingtonians are more nativist than Hungarians.  There is, however, a sudden storm of propaganda about how Viktor Orban is a proto-fascist, every time he passes a law that restricts either 1) foreign banking interests or 2) foreign media conglomerates from moving in and taking over his country.  Funny about that.  Orban is a nice, charming, positive guy until he prevents Hungary from being used as a doormat, at which time he morphs overnight into a neo-Fascist.  Uh-huh.

      •  People like Kim Lane Scheppele from Princeton (0+ / 0-)

        and Paul Krugman seem to disagree with you. I suppose a restriction on free expression, an attack on the judiciary, rampant anti semitism and the plumeting pol numbers for Orban's party among actual Hungarian voters (16% approval) doesn't trump your little trip. Revisit your comment by years end when the new constitution has been in place a year and tell me again what you think. Maybe you could do some research before that time that does not involve a vacation.

        •  Meh. (0+ / 0-)

          I'm not saying yeah or nay, except that Orban was the darling of the ECB set until he decided to go after foreign banks.  And rather than take Krugman's word for it (who I respect greatly as an economist and commentator on AMERICAN politics), I've been reading the Hungarian and Romanian papers for several years.  You get somewhat of a different perspective when you look for local information rather than the opinions of foreigners who have somewhat different interests and axes to grind.

          BTW, my month-long trip to Hungary and Romania was at least partly for the purpose of assessing the possibility of immigration.  I spent a good deal more effort learning how to buy toilet paper in convenience stores and whether I could tolerate the local foods, than sipping wine at four-star hotels.  And personally, I found Hungary far more congenial than more "westerner-friendly" (i.e., submissive to IMF demands) Romania.  The cell-phone clerks will take the time necessary to explain the ridiculous four-page provider contracts mandated by law, and aren't shy about critiquing said law.  The music is fantastic.  And the Hungarian police are at the same time absolutely punctilious in their duties, and wonderfully polite (we managed to accumulate a couple of tickets by being unaware of local customs).  They even smile.

          Of course, I will defer to your greater knowledge if you have actually been living there recently.

          •   (0+ / 0-)

            Day to day living is hardly politics. I have lived in Europe and there was main stream media discussion but, hardly any of it critical of the government. I am not saying I have greater knowledge than you of Huingary, I clearly do not, I just think it sometimes takes outside observers (as it often does here) to judge how a country is percieved on the world stage. When Hungarian scholars are concerned about the direction the government is taking (anti Semitism, supression of descent, etc) then I tend to listen.

  •  the bitter fruit of the poisoned tree of austerity (9+ / 0-)

    just another tool by neoliberals to enforce their misery upon the populations they prey upon.

    it can happen here, if we let them wreck our economy and government to the degree that greece is suffering through, make no mistake.

  •  i can't wait until the austerity that obama is (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    allenjo, ichibon, joanneleon

    pushing bears fruit in a serious economic decline.  fsm only knows what sort of fascists are waiting for their moment here in america.

    i'm part of the 99% - america's largest minority

    by joe shikspack on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 04:48:09 PM PST

    •  so much happening in greece is also going on here (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cynndara, joe shikspack, joanneleon

      maybe just at different levels - for now.

      But if austerity rules here, we will be the same end result as Greece.

      How strange that the politicians do not see that. Greece as a society is just barely hanging on.

      "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

      by allenjo on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 05:05:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Two cautions. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ichibon

    First, there is good reason for the banksters to continuously pump the danger of right-wing factions.  WWII left permanent scars on Europe, and nobody but NOBODY wants a repeat, even if they support fairly right-wing policies.  Raising the specter of a fascist-style takeover is good politics and a perfect justification for police crackdowns on the large mobs of populist protesters angered by ceaseless, futile austerity.  Attributing large proportions of neo-fascist support to the police also provides plausible deniability if they should go too far in suppressing legitimate dissent.  Remember that Greece has been a hotbed of protest against the destructive use of government to oppress the people for the benefit of the ruling classes.  How better to de-legitimize this movement, than to link it to the ever-unpopular Nazis?  Especially in Greece, which conducted a WWII resistance more ferocious than any except that of Tito's Partisans in Yugoslavia.

    Second, I think there's a good possibility that at least some of the comments early in that news section involved pulling the reporter's leg.  Severely.  You must remember that the Greeks have a sense of humor.  They also don't take the BBC nearly as seriously as it takes itself.

    •  you think Golden Dawn is only a movement cynndara? (0+ / 0-)
      How better to de-legitimize this movement, than to link it to the ever-unpopular Nazis?
      perhaps I am misunderstanding you. I would certainly hope so.

      "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

      by allenjo on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 06:21:33 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Possibly. (0+ / 0-)

        The "movement" to which I am referring is the Greek form of the Spanish "Indignants", who have mobilized nearly continuous demonstrations for the last several years against the imposition of austerity measures by the bankster-controlled governments.  The propaganda however, characterizes the rise of the Golden Dawn as a "reaction" to the "unrest" and therefore implies that all protest against austerity is unpatriotic and destabilizing, and therefore good citizens must tighten their belts and stop complaining because their complaints give an excuse to Fascists to move in.

        If the current situation is parallel to that of the 1930's, however, the Golden Dawn will play for support from the more submissive and "respectable" elements in the working class, while making their political bed with the power elite to crush them.  It's very likely that contacts have already been made and they are currently coordinating their own outbreaks and demonstrations to timetables set by their establishment cronies.
         

        •  Greece has ALWAYS had fascists (0+ / 0-)

          What are fascists but criminals anyway? The fascists in Greece are essentially mafia who see an opening. But the larger movement has always been there. Greece is called a Socialist country which is laughable, given its history. After the National Schism, it had a 10 year fascist gov't in the 1930s, and though it was a fascist who said "No" to the Italians and Hitler, the quislings who joined the Nazis were part of the brand. After WW2, the west shored up the Greek fascists all the way from the Civil War until the downfall of the junta dictators in 1974. Greece has basically had only 2 decades in a century outside of fascism.

          You know things are bad when a village with hundreds of skulls of those killed by Nazis, skulls interred in a museum, votes 20% for Golden Dawn.

          People look at the Club Med countries as Socialist wastrels, but few mention the history of fascism in Greece, Italy and Spain, the oligarchic kleptocracies, the lack of social welfare, the lack of development and infrastructure from totally weak and inept gov't.

          There are two kinds of people in this world. The kind who divide the world into two kinds of people, and the kind who don't.

          by upstate NY on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 07:30:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The Fathers of Austerity (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joanneleon

    would like nothing better than neo-Nazi takeovers in Europe. It's much easier for them to turn each EU country into a puppet authoritarian dictatorship if the people do it to themselves.

    Just think: if enough EU countries go this route, the Owners could once more sell them arms as separate countries -- so that they could kill each other again, as they used to do in the good old days of castles and serfs.

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